Earth’s climate has changed many times over the millennia, but since the mid-20th century the rate of change is unprecedented. Scientific studies overwhelmingly show ocean temperatures are rising, along with sea levels; glaciers are rapidly receding; snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere is decreasing; and extreme storms are becoming more and more common.
And yet, politically, America is at a standstill on the issue. While some may blame climate change deniers, it’s not that simple.
Tuesday, a panel of experts will explore the issue at a climate change forum presented by the Lewiston City Library, Lewiston Tribune and Lewis-Clark State College.
“The focus is less on ‘is there really a problem’ and more on, ‘how does policy affect the issue and how do we move forward’,” said Alexa Eccles, the library’s director.
The panel features three LCSC professors, Nancy Johnston, Keegan Schmidt and Leif Hoffmann. Johnston has a doctorate in atmospheric chemistry from the University of California, Irvine, where she worked under Nobel Prize Laureate Sherry Rowland, credited with discovering the mechanism of ozone destruction. Schmidt is a geologist with a view of atmosphere-earth interactions. Hoffmann, a political scientist, will look at public policies surrounding the issue.
Drawing on the knowledge of local experts, the hope is to raise the level of educated debate, Eccles said. “The library provides neutral ground for informed discussion.”
The forum will be moderated by Andrew Hanson, LCSC vice president for student affairs. A question-and-answer session will follow.
IF YOU GO
WHAT: Climate Change Forum
WHEN: 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 30
WHERE: Lewiston City Library, second-floor meeting room